South PhiladelphiaSouth Philadelphia began as a satellite town of Philadelphia, with small townships such as Moyamensing and Southwark. During the Industrial Revolution, the area saw rapid growth, in part due to mass immigration from Ireland. Its urbanized border reached that of Philadelphia. Along with all other jurisdictions in the county, South Philadelphia became part of the City of Philadelphia proper with passage by the Pennsylvania legislature of the city/county Act of Consolidation, 1854. The area continued to grow, becoming a vital part of Philadelphia’s large industrial base and attracting immigrants from Italy, Ireland, Poland, and many other countries during the 19th and early 20th centuries, as well as Black American migrants from the southern United States during the Great Migration of the early 20th century. The immigrants and migrants became the basis of South Philadelphia’s unique and vibrant culture that developed over the next several decades. Struggling to maintain their Catholic identity in a mostly Protestant city, the Irish built a system of Irish Catholic churches and parochial schools for their children, and added Catholic high schools. The later immigrant populations of Italians and Polish were also Catholic. At first they attended the existing churches but built their own national churches when they could. Ethnic Irish controlled the Catholic clergy and hierarchy for decades in Philadelphia and the region. Despite the dramatic growth in population, the low funding of education by the city resulted in the first public high school not being formed in South Philadelphia until 1934.  Attracted to the industrial jobs, the new residents created communities that continued many of their traditions.

While many of the new arrivals were Catholic, neighborhood parishes reflected their national traditions. Monsignor James F. Connelly, the pastor of the Stella Maris Catholic Church and an editor of the 1976 work The History of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, said in a 2005 Philadelphia Inquirer article that each parish church “offer[s] the immigrants the faith they were familiar with.” With the dramatic loss of industrial jobs during mid-20th century restructuring, there were population losses in South Philadelphia as well as other working-class parts of the city, and some neighborhood Catholic schools had to close.

South Philadelphia Communities

Most of South Philadelphia’s communities are largely Italian American. There also continue to be many ethnic Irish Americans and African Americans. An increase in late 20th-century immigration has given South Philadelphia significant populations from Asia: Vietnam, Cambodia, and Thailand; as well as from Russia and Mexico, and smaller groups from dozens of nations across the world. Today, many vendors at the Italian Market are of Asian descent, and Vietnamese and Thai restaurants are interspersed with historic Italian ones in the Market area. The recent revitalization of Center City Philadelphia and the subsequent gentrification of adjacent neighborhoods has led to dramatic rises in prices of housing in the neighborhoods of historic Queen Village, Bella Vista, and some other parts of South Philadelphia.

Many of the community clubs that create the annual Mummers Parade every New Year’s Day have traditionally been from South Philadelphia, especially those located on the largely Irish American S. 2nd Street (“Two Street”) in the Pennsport neighborhood.

South Philadelphia Boundaries

South Street to the north, the Delaware River to the east and south, and the Schuylkill River to the west.


Property Listings in South Philadelphia

  1. 5 beds, 4 baths
    Home size: 3,696 sq ft
    Lot size: 1,742 sqft
    Year built: 1915
    Listing with: Keller Williams Realty Center City
  2. 4 beds, 3 baths
    Home size: 2,208 sq ft
    Lot size: 2,178 sqft
    Year built: 1999
    Listing with: Century 21 Target Realty
  3. 6 beds, 4 baths
    Home size: 2,982 sq ft
    Lot size: 1,306 sqft
    Year built: 1934
    Listing with: Central Realty Group LLC
  4. 0 beds, 0 bath
    Home size: 1,800 sq ft
    Lot size: 871 sqft
    Year built: 1918
    Listing with: Coldwell Banker Preferred-Center City
  5. 3 beds, 3 baths
    Home size: 3,160 sq ft
    Lot size: 871 sqft
    Year built: 1938
    Listing with: Mercury Real Estate Group
  6. 4 beds, 3 baths
    Home size: 2,880 sq ft
    Lot size: 2,613 sqft
    Year built: 2015
    Listing with: Century 21 Forrester Real Estate
  7. 4 beds, 3 baths
    Home size: 2,464 sq ft
    Lot size: 871 sqft
    Year built: 2018
    Listing with: Entourage Elite Real Estate-Conshohocken
  8. 3 beds, 4 baths
    Home size: 1,590 sq ft
    Lot size: 871 sqft
    Year built: 1926
    Listing with: Century 21 Target Realty
  9. 3 beds, 3 baths
    Home size: 1,700 sq ft
    Lot size: 871 sqft
    Year built: 2018
    Listing with: YouList Realty, Inc
  10. 3 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,488 sq ft
    Lot size: 871 sqft
    Year built: 1927
    Listing with: Homelink Realty
  11. 3 beds, 3 baths
    Lot size: 435 sqft
    Year built: 2017
    Listing with: BHHS Fox & Roach-Center City Walnut
  12. 0 beds, 0 bath
    Home size: 1,590 sq ft
    Lot size: 871 sqft
    Year built: 1921
    Listing with: Century 21 Target Realty
  13. 0 beds, 1 bath
    Home size: 3,800 sq ft
    Lot size: 3,920 sqft
    Year built: 2014
    Listing with: Mercury Real Estate Group
  14. 3 beds, 1 bath
    Home size: 1,084 sq ft
    Lot size: 871 sqft
    Year built: 1968
    Listing with: Long & Foster-Philadelphia
  15. 0 beds, 0 bath
    Home size: 1,869 sq ft
    Lot size: 871 sqft
    Year built: 1922
    Listing with: Furia Real Estate
  16. 2 beds, 3 baths
    Home size: 1,705 sq ft
    Year built: 2008
    Listing with: Keller Williams Philly
  17. 3 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,584 sq ft
    Lot size: 871 sqft
    Year built: 1925
    Listing with: Homestarr Realty
  18. 2 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,536 sq ft
    Lot size: 871 sqft
    Year built: 1925
    Listing with: Alpha Realty Group
  19. 3 beds, 1 bath
    Home size: 1,115 sq ft
    Lot size: 871 sqft
    Year built: 1930
    Listing with: Keller Williams Realty Center City
  20. 3 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,496 sq ft
    Lot size: 871 sqft
    Year built: 1926
    Listing with: Corporate Realty Partners & Co. Inc
  21. 4 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,344 sq ft
    Lot size: 871 sqft
    Listing with: Century 21 Target Realty
  22. 3 beds, 1 bath
    Home size: 1,092 sq ft
    Lot size: 871 sqft
    Year built: 1937
    Listing with: Fred R Levine Real Estate
  23. 3 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,070 sq ft
    Lot size: 871 sqft
    Year built: 1963
    Listing with: Century 21 Target Realty
  24. 3 beds, 1 bath
    Home size: 1,176 sq ft
    Lot size: 871 sqft
    Year built: 1926
    Listing with: Century 21 Forrester Real Estate
  25. 3 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,068 sq ft
    Lot size: 871 sqft
    Year built: 1923
    Listing with: Philly Real Estate

See all Real estate in the Phila (south) tract.
(all data current as of 2/21/2018)

Listing information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. Read full disclaimer.